Yesterday, South Africa’s first-ever Oscar Nominated film in the Best Foreign Language Category, which was re-released on 21 January has seen a significant increase in its boxoffice earnings since the Academy Award Nominations were announced last Tuesday (25 January). This past weekend, Yesterday‘s boxoffice increased by a whopping 350% compared to the previous weekend and this is attributed to the Oscar Nomination received by the film. The film, produced by Anant Singh and Helena Spring, and written and directed by acclaimed director, Darrell James Roodt, stars Leleti Khumalo of Sarafina! fame.
Yesterday, which is the first commercial isiZulu feature film, illustrates that local films, made in indigenous languages can succeed at the South African boxoffice and can also find success abroad. Yesterday is being distributed by HBO Films both in North America and in other international territories.
Producer of Yesterday, Anant Singh commented, “We were thrilled with the Oscar Nomination for Best Foreign Language Film. We are delighted that South African audiences are supporting Yesterday in its second run. This is certainly a boost for the local film industry and we hope that audiences will respond equally well to more hone-grown films. ”
Yesterday has now been booked by more cinemas and will be playing at the following cinemas from 4 February 2005: Monte Casino, Benoni, Menlyn Park, Goodhope, Hillbrow, Cascades, Sammy Marks, Pavilion, Shiraz, V & A, Canal Walk, Horizon, CinemaStarz Grandwest, Ridge Secunda and CinemaStarz Boardwalk.
HBO Films will release Yesterday in North America and the company is also handling the worldwide distribution of the film. Yesterday is a Videovision Entertainment production in association with the Nelson Mandela Foundation, M-Net, The National Film And Video Foundation, Distant Horizon and was shot on location in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. The music was composed by Madala Kunene and it is executive produced by Sudhir Pragjee and Sanjeev Singh, produced by Anant Singh and Helena Spring and written and directed by Darrell James Roodt.
The Oscars will be broadcast live on M-Net’s Movie Magic channel on the morning of Monday, 28 February 2005 at 3.00am and will be rebroadcast 7.30pm on the same day.
Yesterday was released in South Africa by United International Pictures.